Art Divell, CEO of Data-Basics, an Internet-based enterprise software company in Cleveland, Ohio, talks with a contractor during one of the ACCA Contracting Week conferences in Fort Worth. Data-Basics was one of many sponsors for the meeting series.

FORT WORTH, Texas - A new meeting concept developed by the Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA), Contracting Week™, consisting of four major events: Green Contracting Summit, Commercial Contracting Roundtable, National HVACR Service Managers Forum, and Refrigeration Contracting Roundtable, recently convened at the Sheraton Fort Worth, Oct. 5-10. Attendees literally came from around the world to learn about their respective business sectors during this unprecedented event where more than 30 learning labs were available.

Contractors could mix and match their own experience at Contracting Week, with individual registrations available for each two-day education conference, a combination of two events in one package, or an all-access pass for the entire week. More than 300 people registered for the series of events held in the cultural center of downtown Fort Worth.

The Green Contracting Summit held Oct. 5-6, explored a variety of issues, from small homes to large buildings, and the future of green retrofits, to green marketing strategies. (See the feature article “Green Summit: Inspections Important” in this issue.)

The 7th Annual Commercial Contracting Roundtable was held concurrent with the 3rd Annual National HVACR Service Managers Forum on Oct. 7-8. The combination of these two previously successful meetings naturally attracted the largest number of attendees. Some of the featured highlights included Right Sizing Your Business by Randy Stutzman, and Randy Pennington’s opening session keynote address, Results Rule!

A contracting firm’s success rests on the abilities and energy of its service management team. It’s the service department that builds the relationships, gets the leads, and helps drive a contractor’s revenues. One firm sent two representatives from Dubai to attend these sessions. The U.S. Chiller Services company has more than 1 million tons of chillers under service agreements in Dubai, where the company performs comprehensive operations and maintenance services for the Burj Kalifa (world’s tallest building) and the Dubai Mall (world’s largest Mall) and scores of other buildings and hotels within this square kilometer site.

Regarding his reasoning for traveling 25 hours to Fort Worth, Dan Mizesko, managing partner, U.S. Chiller Services, said, “We think we do a pretty good job, but you can always learn different things from other people. We are looking for new, cutting-edge technologies for saving energy because we are also an energy service company, and we gear ourselves toward the air conditioning side. This meeting has been well worth the trip; we have already agreed with two companies we met, to become a beta site in Dubai for their technologies. On another note, we met some instructors from an HVAC college, and we are going to recruit graduates of their school, and bring them to Dubai to put them in our five-year apprentice program.”


The Refrigeration Contracting Roundtable held Oct. 9-10, constituted a first-time offering by the ACCA association. Holland said, “We wanted to provide a better resource for this very important segment of our own membership and offer the additional educational resource to all contracting companies that design, install, and maintain refrigeration systems. This Refrigeration Roundtable has been developed in cooperation with refrigeration contractors from all over the country who wanted a meeting of their own.”

The interactive session brought the top refrigeration contracting firms together for a day and a half of intense discussion and learning sessions designed to help refrigeration contractors succeed in an environment of rapidly changing regulations, equipment, and refrigerants.

The unprecedented four events in one setting was produced by ACCA, and co-sponsored by The NEWS. ACCA corporate sponsors for the events included: Rheem Manufacturing, Lennox International, Goodman Manufacturing, Emerson Climate Technologies, Jackson Systems, Openstream, Carrier Corp., North American Technician Excellence, Mitsubishi Electric, USA Refrigerants, WaterFurnace Renewable Energy, and Federated Insurance. Additional sponsors of the events included Jackson Systems, USA Refrigerants, M&M Manufacturing, Emerson Climate Technologies, Building Advice, Data-Basics, Federated Insurance, Gemaire Distributors, Openstream, Davis Ware, Jonas Software, Ultimate Technical Academy, Service Automation, Purechem, Appion, Comfort Institute, Ultra-Aire, Kudzu, and True Wireless.

Publication date:12/13/2010